This annual premier smart growth event organized and hosted by the Local Government Commission focuses on providing practical tools and innovative strategies for creating great communities. The 2016 conference featured over 90 sessions and workshops, as well as several tours and interactive conference features, that provided insight about some of the newest, most forward thinking smart growth topics.
Nearly all of the 2016 presentations given at the New Partners Conference are available for FREE!
Watch all of the 2016 New Partners Conference plenaries for free on YouTube!
Over 100 participants attended the “Intention and Innovation toward Healthy, Equitable Food Systems” pre-conference workshop, presented by the MSU Regional Food Systems and the LGC, with funding from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation’s Food and Community Program.
Greatly enjoyed the conference and the networking that was created during and after the workshops.
– Gus Aguirre, Project Coordinator, CCEJN
Strong communities mean strong relationships. Are you willing to listen and respect people enough to work within their frameworks or do you just want to push them into yours?
– Paula Daniels, Founder, Los Angeles Food Policy Council
New Partners introduced its new Conference App this year. The mobile app put the conference at participants’ fingertips, allowing them to get the most up-to-date information about the program and special events, build their own schedule on their mobile device, and easily network with other smart-growth professionals at the event.
Over the course of the three-day conference, there were:
What a fun and great app! Super engaging
– 2016 Conference Participant
Very excited about the new mobile app! It’s so awesome to be able to connect with speakers and attendees right on my phone!
– 2016 Conference Participant
More than two dozen young leaders from across the country attended New Partners as attendees and speakers in networking activities – including specific events for young leaders – in workshops and in leading discussions and presenting during several conference sessions and tours.
At the smart growth conference I learned how I can achieve my goals for my community such as finding ways to get money for things around my town… we do have the power to achieve what we want and that we shouldn’t be scared to find out ways on how to help our communities.
– Jonathan Reyes Hernandez, Youth Leaders
After participating in the Crowd-resourcing session, my partners and I came out with strong ideas of how to harness our members’ skills to fund-raise. We are excited to be bringing them back to our board and our members to get a few of our previously stagnant projects off the ground.
– Zelia Gonzales, Youth Leader
More than 280 participants attended at least one of the conference’s 13 optional tours of local model projects and the full-day, pre-conference tour of the Columbia River Gorge – from forest to mountain range to small towns.
This was my favorite part of the entire conference — on the ground, walking, seeing different housing types in person! Great chance to continue networking while walking, and over lunch too.
– 2016 Tour Participant
The kick-off plenary featured a keynote from Ron Sims, Civic Volunteer Active in Health, Education, Environmental and Societal Equity Issues Response Panel and a moderated response panel featuring Rukaiyah Adams, Chief Investment Officer at Meyer Memoral Trust, Glenn Harris, President of the Center for Social Inclusion and Chris Benner, Ph.D., Professor of Environmental Studies and Sociology at the University of California, Santa Cruz. They discussed equitable development through a ‘Golden Age’ of community place-making where experts are realizing that good redevelopment and meeting the needs of underserved communities can no longer afford to be mutually exclusive.
No one wants to leave their neighborhood, and everyone should be allowed to dream in their neighborhood.
– Ron Sims, Civic Volunteer Active in Health, Education, Environmental and Social Equity Issues Response Panel
This hosted keynote lunch featured Neil McFarlane, TriMet General Manager, Mathy Stanislaus, Associate Administrator at the U.S. EPA Office of Land and Emergency Management, Michelle Pirzadeh, Deputy Regional Administrator at US EPA, Region 10 and Danielle Arigoni, Acting Directro of the Office of Economic Resilience at HUD. They illustrated the three federal programs illustrating the new approach to supporting smart growth and sustainability.
The New Partners conference provides a great opportunity to learn how to put ideas into action, and reminds us how important this work is.
– Janet Spilman, Director of Planning, Sonoma County Transportation Authority
After Thursday’s sessions, a big group of attendees headed out for a Beervana presentation about Portland’s famous microbrewery scene, followed by an informal pub crawl and a chance for smart-growth trivia bragging rights at Game Night.
Hop farmer Pat Leavey telling the story of “brewers gold” American hops at Beervana & Game Night … good stuff!
– Sara Lewis, 2016 Conference Participants
A half-dozen interactive parklets were installed inside the conference venue, with themes ranging from youth and healthy living to sustainable landscaping and innovative design materials.
Had an awesome time hearing the music yesterday morning.
– Edgar Garibay, 2016 Conference Participant
Puck Mykleby, Retired US Marine Corps Colonel and Co-founder of the Strategic Innovation Lab at Case Western University shared his views on a new US Grand strategy with sustainability as the central foundation for developing a more prosperous and secure nation during this Friday morning plenary.
Sustainability is our purpose today. It is our cause. And in that cause, in a complete measure, we will truly be taking on a cause of all mankind.
– Mark “Puck” Mykleby, Retired U.S. Marine Corps Colonel; Co-founder, Strategic Innovation Lab, Case Western University
Conference participants loved trying out cutting edge tools for scenario planning and public engagement during the fourth Technology Fair, hosted by PlaceMatters, along with U.S. EPA and the Open Planning Tools Group. Tools included mapping and alternative analysis tools to aid planning, interactive and data rich 3-D visualization, and online tools and mobile apps to engage stakeholders typically not reached through public meetings.
So much to see at the tech fair.
– Rebecka Weinsteiger, 2016 Conference Participant
The range of topics, speakers, exhibitors were all valuable in working toward building complete communities. As a City Councilor it was important to hear new ideas, new technologies and learn from many who have been through the same experiences we are facing.
– Wilda Parks, Councilor, City of Milwaukie, Oregon
This Saturday morning plenary featured Kate Meis, Executive Director of the Local Government Commission, Steve Hansen, City of Sacramento Councilmember, Peter Luchetti Founder of Table Rock Capital and Vice Chair of the California Infrastructure and Economic Development Bank, and Rick Cole, City Manager for the City of Santa Monica, CA. They shared information on how to develop private-sector partnerships and solutions to fund public-benefit projects.
We have to reject the idea that fear should drive our discussions about developing more equitable, healthy, and sustainable communities
– Kate Meis, Executive Director, Local Government Commission
Dan Buettner, National Geographic Fellow and multiple New York Times bestselling author closed out the conference. He ended the conference with an exciting talk about Blue Zones around the world and how the Blue Zones project is working to create an action plan for communities to change their environments into safe, walkable, bikeable and livable communities where individuals and businesses thrive, people live longer, and health and quality of life are improved.
People who live long lives have “purpose imbued with a sense of responsibility.
– Dan Buettner, Founder, Blue Zones, LLC
Engaging talk by Dan Buettner. He tells us that life expectancy is determined 20% by our genes – the other 80% by our environment and lifestyle. Place matters! Access matters!
– Sheila Nem, 2016 Conference Attendees